2) Ranking the best FA's still available for the Angels to target: Dansby Swanson
The Angels need a shortstop. Plain and simple. I'm not in love with Dansby Swanson or think he's going to be worth whatever contract he ends up getting, but he'd still be a massive upgrade over what the Angels have right now in David Fletcher.
Swanson is coming off a career year which saw him slash .277/.329/.447 with 25 home runs and 96 RBI. He also stole 18 bases and smacked 35 doubles. Swanson's 115 OPS+ tied his career best from his rookie season in which he only played 38 games.
I'm of the belief Swanson is not a great hitter. He had a good year this year but he still struck out 182 times (26.2%) while walking just 49 times (7.0%) in 696 plate appearances. He ranked in the 20th and 36th percentiles in those categories respectively according to baseball savant. Those numbers were around where he's been his whole career so I don't expect any radical change there.
What Dansby can do at the plate is hit for power. He hit 25 homers this season and 27 in 2021. David Fletcher has hit four home runs combined in the last two seasons.
Swanson was an all-star, finished 12th in the MVP balloting, and won a Gold Glove. He was eighth in the National League with a 6.4 fWAR. Angels shortstops were 27th in baseball with 1.1 fWAR.
While I'm not a believer in his bat, I am a believer in two things. His glove, and his durability. Swanson is an extraordinary defender at shortstop and he led the league in outs above average, ranking in the 100th percentile. He's been an elite defender for years.
Swanson is also great at staying on the field. He's missed two total games in the last three seasons which is unheard of nowadays. He played in all 60 games in the shortened 2020 season, played in 160 out of 162 games in 2021, and he played in every game this past season. For a team that gets hurt as much as the Angels do, Swanson's durability would be very welcome.
I don't love the player, but the need is glaring. If the Halos want to compete they need a shortstop. Swanson is a good option.